Kale is good for your beardies

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Claudiusx

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A bit of confusion here I believe is that different species of kale obviously have different levels of vitamins, minerals, and oxalates.

The USDA used to state that a 100g serving of Kale had around 20mg of oxalate, which really isn't too much. However, a much more recent study has found Kale to actually be quite low, at 2mg per 1 cup chopped.(1)

However, we don't know which variety of Kale was actually used. That being said, there really are no other good sources out there from anything other than the typical health food blogger about how much oxalate content Kale has.

https://oxalate.org/ has quite a database which allows you to search for food items and it tells you the source of the data.

But, should we even care about oxalates? Well to a certain degree. Obviously we don't want to feed foods that are extremely high in oxalate content, such as rhubarb leaves. But, I think we are demonizing something here that doesn't really need to be demonized.

Collard greens for example, are touted as a great staple. They have ~400mg of oxalate per 100g (2). That's a lot more than even the old high numbers of kale were. But, you'd be hard pressed to get a dragon to even eat that much Collard. Harvard 2008 shows that 1 cup of collard is only 10mg of oxalate anyways.(2)

So if kale was only demonized for it's oxalate content, it was wrongly so.

Here is the thing - the body is a wonderful thing. It is more complicated than any of us could ever fathom. It has so many moving and working parts to it, that trying to figure out one thing often leads you down a path of dozens of more interactions and complications. Like the fact that Vitamin C can be converted into Oxalic acid in the body too. Does that mean that you should stop feeding foods that are high in Vitamin C? Absolutely not.

The body has ways of dealing with excess, and the body has ways (to a degree) of dealing with a lack of things. Kale provides a ton of health benefits, and a ton of micro-nutrition. To avoid it simply over one potential negative (all the while many other plants have the same issues) is silly in my opinion.

Lets remember here that most all vegetable leaves will have high(er) oxalate content. But that doesn't necessarily make them a bad choice.

But lets also remember, there is no one right way to raise our dragons. There is no 1 perfect diet.

-Brandon
 

AHBD

BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Yes, considering the high nutritional value of kale it is a great choice in a beardie's salad. And thanks for adding that collards [ usually touted as one of if not THE best green ] has HIGHER oxalate content there is no need to avoid kale but it should be included in with turnip, mustard, collards, arugula.
 

Claudiusx

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
I did want to add on to what I posted - the fact that I don't think any one food should be fed solely. Not 1 single food provides everything the body needs. The more variety you can offer, the better. And IMO, kale VERY easily fits the criteria of a suitable food item to add to the diet. I don't really like the term "staple" as at implies to many that this food is ok to be fed as the 1 and only.

-Brandon
 

MCHRKiller

Hatchling Member
Ive always fed mine kale regularly...they prefer it to collards and well I do too. They will eat the collards but Arugula and Kale...are their preferences. Lizards like people have preferences some beardies are the equivalent to our chicken tender ordering friends who have the pallet of a child and well they survive alright. Animals are adaptable; sure we should offer them healthy foods and try to make their diet as healthy as possible but ya know if they wont eat it and dont like it find something else. Variety in the diet is key...now IMO this doesnt need to be 30 different fruits and veg on the daily. But a few things the animal likes fed throughout the week keeps them in their best. I buy seasonal so the herps get new and different foods as the season changes as well. They are all pretty healthy and the 2 which Ive reared have no MBD or health issues to speak of so it must be acceptable. I think folks get super stressed out over diet when really thats the easy part.
 
Thanks for sharing this information!

I shied away from kale when I first got my beardie because I'd seen a few places that I shouldn't use it but one day I ran out of my usual variety of greens and offered it...he LOVED it. So I've started adding it into the rotation.

But like Brandon said, he does best with variety so about 1-2 times a week I swing by the store and a few bits of produce and i make sure it's never the same as last time...which ultimately ends up working out anyway because I try to make sure I grab what looks the best too! He won't touch and wilted greens. :lol:
 

BeardedDragonSteve

Juvie Member
claudiusx":vd506noa said:
A bit of confusion here I believe is that different species of kale obviously have different levels of vitamins, minerals, and oxalates.

The USDA used to state that a 100g serving of Kale had around 20mg of oxalate, which really isn't too much. However, a much more recent study has found Kale to actually be quite low, at 2mg per 1 cup chopped.(1)

However, we don't know which variety of Kale was actually used. That being said, there really are no other good sources out there from anything other than the typical health food blogger about how much oxalate content Kale has.

https://oxalate.org/ has quite a database which allows you to search for food items and it tells you the source of the data.

But, should we even care about oxalates? Well to a certain degree. Obviously we don't want to feed foods that are extremely high in oxalate content, such as rhubarb leaves. But, I think we are demonizing something here that doesn't really need to be demonized.

Collard greens for example, are touted as a great staple. They have ~400mg of oxalate per 100g (2). That's a lot more than even the old high numbers of kale were. But, you'd be hard pressed to get a dragon to even eat that much Collard. Harvard 2008 shows that 1 cup of collard is only 10mg of oxalate anyways.(2)

So if kale was only demonized for it's oxalate content, it was wrongly so.

Here is the thing - the body is a wonderful thing. It is more complicated than any of us could ever fathom. It has so many moving and working parts to it, that trying to figure out one thing often leads you down a path of dozens of more interactions and complications. Like the fact that Vitamin C can be converted into Oxalic acid in the body too. Does that mean that you should stop feeding foods that are high in Vitamin C? Absolutely not.

The body has ways of dealing with excess, and the body has ways (to a degree) of dealing with a lack of things. Kale provides a ton of health benefits, and a ton of micro-nutrition. To avoid it simply over one potential negative (all the while many other plants have the same issues) is silly in my opinion.

Lets remember here that most all vegetable leaves will have high(er) oxalate content. But that doesn't necessarily make them a bad choice.

But lets also remember, there is no one right way to raise our dragons. There is no 1 perfect diet.

-Brandon
My beardie loves kale
 

DorgEndo

Juvie Member
Photo Comp Winner
Adding to the sticky content that I like to add kale in on multivitamin days. Not every multivitamin day, but sometimes since kale has a natural iron content to it, and the multivitamin has iron. I will put the occasion spinach leaf in on multivitamin day. This makes sense to me to use kale this way. I have been known to drizzle mandarin orange juice, fresh squeezed of course, on top of the kale as the vitamin C component to my iron absorption plan for my dragon.
 

Wickedpogana

Juvie Member
I use to feed my kale often when I first got him and read alot about how bad it was and nothing too positive so I stopped feeding to him but he never had runny poop or anything everything was the same as now that being said next time I reup on veggies I'm getting kale
 

Jacobsherps

Hatchling Member
I grow my own kale for my dragons in an areogarden which is a type of gardening style called areoponics i think and it technicly lets you grow a plant with 0 soil and works by letting the roots hang in water. Ive found that they grow faster and healthyer in this garden and the dragons love it in there salads and just plain
 
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